The music education world mourned the sudden loss of George N. Parks in September. George's reach has been felt across generations, from coast-to-coast and beyond. George was a long-time part of the Music for All family. Tens of thousands of young leaders had positively life-changing experiences through George's Drum Major Academy and in the BOA Honor Band in the Rose Parade under his direction in 2009 and 2005.
Music for All will pay tribute to George N. Parks, Friday, Nov. 12, 2010 as part of the Grand National Championships in Indianapolis. The tribute will take place at the opening of the Preliminary Awards Ceremony, at approximately 8:45 p.m. in Lucas Oil Stadium.
As part of this special tribute, MFA invites all alumni of the George N. Parks Drum Major Academy, of the BOA Honor Band in the Rose Parade or the University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band to be part of an on field presentation. Alumni of these programs will be invited to join the Grand Nationals Band drum majors on field to pay their respects to this master teacher who taught so many.
You will need a Friday preliminary ticket to enter the stadium. Instructions of where to meet and what time to meet in order to be escorted on to the field will be emailed to you prior to Wednesday, November 10. Please sign up to confirm your participation so that we can plan the on field tribute and send details to you.
Volunteer at Music for All's Bands of America Grand National Championships!
Join us November 10-13 for the Bands of America Grand National Championships and be a part of the Music for All Family's 35th Anniversary Celebration!
90 Bands from 20 states compete over three days to crown one Bands of America Grand National Champion. Be part of the volunteer event staff and make a difference for thousands of young musicians, while serving an integral role in presenting this world-class event in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Learn more about how to volunteer and Grand Nationals and register online today!
Watch live video of A Celebration of the Life and Legacy of George N. Parks on Saturday, October 16, beginning at approximately 11:30 a.m. The video will remain on this site after the event.
The University of Massachusetts Amherst celebrates the life and legacy of Professor George N. Parks, who led the Minuteman Marching Band to national prominence during his 33-year tenure. Professor Parks was in the BOA Hall of Fame, led his Drum Major Academy of the Music for All Summer Symposium and directed the BOA Honor Band in the 2009 and 2005 Tournament of Roses Parade.
Professor Parks died September 16 after suffering a heart attack following a performance with the band at an Ohio high school.
If you’re able to volunteer for a Finals shift, in addition to our heartfelt appreciation and a volunteer t-shirt, we will donate $5 per hour for your work during the event to the Booster Organization of your choice.
...plus two Grand Nationals Finals ticketsAlthough we still have needs for the daytime shifts, at this point we're very much still in need of Finals shifts. Shifts are available at three different times of day:
‘Morning’ – Beginning between 7am and 9 am and lasting until Noon or 1 pm.
‘Afternoon’ – Beginning around Noon or 1 pm and lasting until around 5 pm.
‘Evening’ – Beginning around 6:30 pm and lasting until the end of Finals competition.
Please help us make this a positively life-changing experience for the participating bands as we return to the Silverdome!
Larry Harper, Event Coordinator, Music for All
As many of you know, Music for All is a not-for-profit organization, which means we can apply for grants and can accept donations from our supporters. Admission fees, ticket sales, and sponsorships also cover the costs of much of what we do -- and no matter how you support MFA, be it through a charitable gift, ticket purchases, or other means, we really appreciate everything you do.
For the past couple of years we've looked for fun and easy ways for our friends, family, and fans to make charitable donations in support of our mission to create, provide, and expand positively life-changing experiences through music for all. This work has ranged from programs like the Doster Challenge to the Alumni Campaign, when over 1,700 new donors made their first gifts to our Annual Fund! These initiatives were successful, a lot of fun, and did a considerable amount of good for MFA.
Now we've just launched another easy and fun program that allows you to make a contribution. It's our "Text-to-Give and Dial-to-Give" program. In less than a couple of minutes you can make a pledge of support to Music for All just by using your mobile phone.
Give it a try, pledge your support to music education, and let us know how you like this new way to give. Thanks!
All of us at Music for All are heartbroken by the sudden passing of our dear friend and colleague George N. Parks Thursday night. George has been a member of the Music for All and Bands of America family and programs for decades, with our summer camp and as director of the 2005 and 2009 Bands of America Tournament of Roses Parade Honor Band. He profoundly impacted the lives of tens of thousands of young people and all of us in the Music for All family. Please join us in remembering George and keeping his family and the UMass family in our thoughts and prayers.
Music for All is proud to announce that Grammy Award-winning violinist/composer/fiddler Mark O'Connor will be guest soloist with the Honor Orchestra of America at the 2011 Music for All National Festival, March 17-19 in Indianapolis. Larry J. Livingston, University of Souther California, will conduct.
MFA has also extended the application/audition deadline for strings for the 2011 Honor Orchestra until October 15.
If you are familiar with O'Connor, then you already know how exciting this is. If not, here's just a sample of what folks say about his performances:
"One of the most spectacular journeys in recent American music." —New York Times
"One of the most talented and imaginative... working in music -- any music -- today." —Los Angeles Times
"Brilliantly original." —Seattle Times
O'Connor is widely recognized as one of the most gifted contemporary composers in America and surely one of the brightest talents of his generation. The Seattle Times writes: "No matter what he plays, when you’re listening to O’Connor, you know you’re listening to genius." Mark O'Connor incorporates many musical styles and genres into a sound that is uniquely his own. As noted by The Los Angeles Times, Mark O’Connor has "crossed over so many boundaries, that his style is purely personal."
The Honor Orchestra of America will perform two shared concerts with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra at Hilbert Circle Theatre, March 18 and 19.
Learn more about the orchestra and download the application and audition requirements.
How MFA Summer Symposium students and teachers helped unlock a five-year-old’s potential
Tommy Telgenhoff’s mother, Toni Telgenhoff-Garmer, shared this story with us as thanks for the impact MFA and the 2009 Summer Symposium staff and campers had on her little boy:
This summer, when I took my 5-year-old son to watch drummers practice during Music for All’s Summer Symposium at Illinois State University, he took a liking to the drum majors. He watched a small group of them from the sidelines and practiced saluting and marching along with them. Soon, their director approached Tommy and invited him to watch the entire group rehearse on the field the next day.
Tommy woke up the following day eager to start off. To our surprise, the head director, George Parks greeted us and asked if Tommy would like to tell the 560 campers what he wanted to be when he grew up. Tommy raced to the podium with George and told the kids that his name was Tommy and he wanted to be a drum major when he grew up. The kids cheered. Tommy ran back over to us, all smiles. This was the start of something awesome! Tommy marched on the sidelines all day long, watching the kids and practicing his salute.
When he returned the next day he was greeted by smiles, hugs, and high fives. This continued throughout the week. Tommy called out commands to the entire drum major group. Campers and staff had pictures taken with him. He was walking around, full of pride, saluting everyone. All week long he had the most incredible smile on his face. George made him an “honorary vet” and gave him a vet pin, t-shirt and certificate. Tommy was even included in the group picture and brought onto the field in front of everyone at their final performance.
Music for All is offering new, lower ticket prices at Bands of America Regional Championships and we’ve held prices steady at the Super Regionals. We know that as the economy continues on the road to recovery, families are still looking to keep costs down. Even though the costs to Music for All for the BOA Championships go up, we’re committed to not passing those increased costs to ticket buyers in 2010.